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New Radar Control For Trucks, Tractors
It's here - radar control for trucks, tractors and other equipment. Instead of guiding on a line scratched into the soil by a conventional marker, you can now plow, plant, spray or fertilize "around the clock" by watching the needle on a dash-mounted meter. You simply inch the steering wheel right or left, as needed, to stay "on target" without costly skips or overlaps on each pass over the field.
"We're introducing 2,000 units this fall as part of a pilot production program," a spokesman for Ag-Nay, marketer of the new concept, told FARM SHOW. The first-of-its kind computerized guidance system was developed by Energistics, Inc., Ft. Wayne, Ind., and is being manufactured by Magnovox. Marketing is being handled by Ag-Nay, Inc., headquartered at Virginia City, Ill.
Ag-Nay expects custom applicators to be prime prospects for the initial production run. The present system is designed for use only with ground equipment. Similar units for guiding agricultural aircraft are in the research hopper, along with a host of other potential uses for the revolutionary guidance system. Here's how it works:
There is a computer-transmitter receiver unit mounted in the tractor (or truck) with an antenna on top the cab. When he comes to the field, the driver brings with him two portable "repeater units", each of which has a built in transmitter and receiver. These battery-operated repeaters are also equipped with their own antenna and can send or receive radio signals up to about 1 mile.
Upon arriving at the field, the driver puts these "repeaters" at each corner at one end of the field (see drawing) or directly across from each other midpoint in the field. He then adjusts the computer box inside the cab for the width he'll be covering on each pass through the field.
The computer-transmitter-receiver module in the tractor generates radio signals and transmits them (via the roof antenna) to the pair of repeater units. Radio signals received by the repeaters are transmitted back to the tractor cab. The digital computer, using measurements made on the returned signals, then determines the exact location of the tractor and displays any deviation from a straight line pattern. The operator merely steers the tractor right or left so as to keep the meter needle on zero to avoid skips and overlaps. As shown in the drawing, the guidance system is basically a triangle formed by the two repeaters and the tractor.
At the end of each pass, the operator toggles the "next row" switch on the control panel, moving it right or left to establish the path for his return trip. If he's spraying or planting and runs out of material, the operator can mark the spot in the field, drive home to reload, then come back and pick up where he left off without having to recalibrate the control system.
For more details, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Ag-Nay, Inc., Box 55, Virginia City, Ill. 62691 (ph 219

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1977 - Volume #1, Issue #6